New Years Food Resolutions You Can Enjoy

animal-products-t5673I was reading an article this morning on my iPhone about “New Years” resolution’s you can enjoy. It’s about the “Nutrient Rich Foods Approach”. It also says Winners Drink Milk!

Now of course, I just had to jump in on this one because the Dairy and Beef Boards have built their whole marketing and PR campaigns on conveying their products as Nutrient Rich foods and they are NOT, at lease by the true Nutrient Rich definition and believe me, allot of time, logic and brain power went into  defining what it means to eat “Nutrient Rich”.

Before I go any further, and before you think I have it out for animal foods or the fine people who work in the industry that promotes them for nutritional purposes, I want to acknowledge, ironically, the dairy and beef boards for such a great campaign.

The Nutrient Rich foods campaign is really a great campaign, one of the best I have ever seen in nutrition marketing. But also understand, that while supports the campaign in a many ways, there are diet traps hidden within, that can cost you your health and cause you to chase your tail with food issues for the rest of your life!

So as the founder of, I am going to comment on the article’s passages in bold. My comments are indented.

Losing weight is a common New Year’s resolution, but people often resort to diets that restrict nutrients and eliminate food groups. This year, why not avoid thinking about food restrictions and aim to think about eating sensibly to nourish your body and give yourself the essential nutrition you need. “You are more likely to keep resolutions that are positive, such as eating more fruit and vegetables, getting the recommended three servings of dairy products every day, and including regular physical activity” stated Diane Ruyack, MS, RD, CD.

First of all in the New Year, really consider what the word eating “sensibly” means. This is “diet speak” for make sure you don’t go radical on me and cut out eating the food my industry provides.

This is a common term used by eat-everything-in-moderation, four food group activists, members of the dairy and beef council who desperately want their foods to be considered nutrient rich, old timer nutritionists who understand nutrient poor nutrition better than nutrient rich nutrition, and those who are so committed to eating animal foods because of familiarity and addiction, and thinking that animal foods are the only place to get protein and calcium.

Let’s get real, not eating a food group for intelligent health and environmental reasons does not mean you are “restricting” yourself. It means you are making a choice not to consume something that doesn’t serve you.

The Golden Rule of eating truly Nutrient Rich, is that you can eat whatever you want, you just can’t eat “whatever” and get the results you want.

It is not “sensible” to eat significant quantities of foods that don’t serve your health and it’s even worse to make some feel like they are buying into a diet of “restriction” if they don’t eat sensibly.

There is nothing that sensible about eating a diet “based” in foods that clog your arteries, cause you to age faster, toxify your body, are loaded with saturated fat and cholesterol and rape our planet,  of trees and land to produce an inferior food supply that is rich in some nutrients, but as a whole food, is nutrient poor and is a primary cause of disease.

So be careful about falling for words like “sensible” and “restriction” that are used to control your food choices on a false premise.

Eating a diet that is rich, or based in, or predominantly dairy and animal products will ensure that you are “restricting” nutrients and that’s exactly what you don’t want to do. Eliminating or minimizing entire food groups is  fine if they are nutrient poor.

Nutrient-Rich New Year’s RESOLUTIONS:

We are all for true Nutrient Rich New Years Resolutions!

The Nutrient Rich Foods approach to eating is a great way to start the New Year healthy and happy.

Good idea!

Eating Nutrient Rich is the most successful way to eat for health, performance and natural weight loss.

Make your choices based on the total nutrient package of a food or a meal, including the vitamins, minerals, protein and fiber it contains.

If you make food choices based on the “total nutrient package” of a food, milk and beef do not stack up. They are rich in protein no doubt (non health promoting), have no carbohydrate, no phytochemicals,  “some” vitamins and minerals, they have saturated “non essential” fat (amongst other fats), they have cholesterol that you don’t need to take in from dietary sources since your body produces its own cholesterol, no water, no fiber… need I keep going?

Now you can eat small amounts of animal products (even I do from time to time) in a total “meal” package and still be eating nutrient rich 90% or more plant based, but the key is to keep your animal product consumption to 10% of less, if you eat them.


Following the Nutrient Rich Foods approach is a positive, realistic way to think about eating that can provide a fresh jump start for the New Year by shifting the focus from foods to avoid to foods you can enjoy.

Of course, the dairy and beef board do not want you to focus on avoiding dairy or meat (animal) products.

Let’s be clear, you can enjoy more truly nutrient rich foods, meals and menus than you can ever get to in your lifetime, (plant based), and if you eat animal products, include small amounts.

But be careful not to buy into the thinking that eliminating or minimizing the consumption of animal products means you can’t enjoy your new years resolution to eat Nutrient Rich foods.

Animal products, based on the explanation above are nutrient poor. Here’s a simple rational:

Why do you think high protein low carb advocates are always posturing their animal food recommendations along side “Nutrient Rich” vegetables and fruits…? It’s because they are lacking in nutrients.

You never see Nutrient Rich food advocates posturing their food recommendations along side beef and dairy, and if they do include, they mention foods like white meat chicken or turkey or fish and almost always say eat “small amounts”?

The reason is, animal products are nutrient poor and unless you are eating truly nutrient rich foods as the majority of your diet, disease is usually not far away.

Even the dairy and beef boards message says, “eat more fruits and vegetables”, FIRST.

Keep in mind: the main reason why people still eat predominantly animal products is because that’s where they think their protein comes from. ALL PROTEIN COMES FROM PLANTS!

Categorically speaking, the only thing you don’t want to miss out on are whole categories of nutrients. But you can easily eliminate whole categories of foods, or at least minimize them.

Here are some tips:

1. Start every day with a nutrient-rich breakfast, such as a spinach, tomato and pepper omelet with lean ground beef and serve it with whole wheat toast or oatmeal made with low fat milk and topped with dried fruit and nuts.

You could do a lot worse than this meal for sure given a large part of our population wakes up to eat a “continental breakfast” of donuts and cereal. But keep in mind the costs of eating an omelet and ground beef every morning for breakfast, on your health, you heart and the planet.

2. Shop the perimeter of the grocery store to find nutrient-rich foods; focus on the produce section as well as dairy, meat and seafood aisles.

What is new about that message? That’s what many people are doing now. What about eating a diet rich in dairy, meat and seafood is Nutrient Rich?

Of course, the produce section, but dairy, meat and seafood? As if refined foods were the only cause of dietary induced diseases. Nutrient poor foods that contain concentrated substances that your body does not need, are a major cause of disease.

Don’t fall for the Nutrient Rich foods marketing campaign of the dairy and beef industry lock stock and barrel. It’s a good one, but hidden in the message are diet traps.

3. Encourage your family to try a new and out-of-the-ordinary food each week, such as arugula, lentils, low fat ricotta cheese, avocados or kiwifruit.

That’s right, intersperse cheese, (the highest fat food in the world) even if it is low fat, in between the lentils and kiwifruit. Otherwise, a great idea!

4. Make your plate more colorful by including more bright fruits and vegetables in every meal.

Of course, the colors are where all the nutrients are. And these foods have protein too!

5. Instead of frying or sautéing meat, choose to grill or broil lean pieces of chicken, pork or beef.

Right, because cooking and frying already toxic, non health promoting foods, that also have to be eaten lean to be eaten better, would make them even worse.

6. Try low fat or fat-free milk instead of whole milk.

Notice you never have to say, eat fat free or leaner versions of apples, nuts, romaine or quinoa?

7. Stock desk drawers at work with instant oatmeal packets, light microwave popcorn, raisins, dried apricots and single-serve containers of peaches or pears packed in water or juice.

But of course.

8. Trade soda for 100 percent fruit juices or low fat milk.

Good idea, in theory; only standard 100% fruit juices are not usually 100% juice, are not fresh and without the fiber they become an insulin spiking nightmare.

9. Instead of eating out, bring the family closer by working together to try a new nutrient-rich recipe at least once a week.

This is a great idea. Although you can eat out the Nutrient Rich Way, with relative ease. But this is great advice, it’s good for the well being of your family. 🙂

A New Years Food Resolution you can enjoy, is 80-90% or more truly Nutrient Rich foods, meals and menus derived from these foods, 10% or less animal foods (if you eat them) which are rich in some nutrients but as a whole nutrient poor and less than 5% or less refined foods, (if you eat them at all), that have had all the nutrients stripped out of them and are nutrient barren.

What does this convert too?

If you eat 5 meals a day, that 10% means that if you eat animal products you are eating approx 4 meals per week with animal protein in them. I, along with thousands of others know that you will never miss eating animal products if you include them in small quantities, a couple of times per week.

For people who grew up on eating animal products, that strategy works great!

If you eat 5 meals a day (including smaller snacks), and eat 5% of your diet from refined nutrient barren foods, that means the equivalent of 2 junk food meals per week. That strategy also works because you will never miss it.

Meanwhile you are focused on adding more and more Nutrient Rich foods and learning both how to Lose Weight the Nutrient Rich Way, as well eat for health and performance, and natural weight loss.

Happy New Year!

John Allen Mollenhauer

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